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Aug 23, 2008 04:42 PM

Long Beach area......what restaurants are the must go to?

We are taking our friends to dinner in Long Beach/Seal Beach/Sunset Beach area. What restaurants are the must see? Love seafood, steak or American New (aka California, I believe). I haven't been in the area since and thought it was a good location to all halfway meet since we're coming from OC and they from Lakewood. Especially with amazing desserts. thanks.

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  1. Bake 'N Broil, not a fancy place, more of a diner, but the food is fabulous and the desserts are to die for!

    5 Replies
    1. re: Michelle

      Assuming you DON'T want diner food with the blue-hair set, maybe Tracht's which is in the downtown LB Renaissance hotel. They have a summer $30 3-course menu that's a good deal if you can go Sun-Weds.

      1. re: mlgb

        The Bake 'n Broil generally has customers of all ages, and they do have outstanding pies and cakes, but the food in general and atmosphere don't fit the request from the OP, who might want to use the search feature. (Nearly 500 hits on "long beach" in the last year alone.)

        1. re: sbritchky

          Generally, dinner is NOT the strong suit of BnB.

        2. re: mlgb

          Second the Tracht's recommendation. For dessert, the pudding is my favorite, particularly (if they have it that night) the butterscotch.

          1. re: mlgb

            Tracht's, unfortunately, is no more, as of this summer. There's still a restaurant operating in the same space, using some of the same dishes (I read), but it's not Tracht's.

        3. Restaurant Koi in Seal Beach. Excellent sushi, s it at the bar w/Tako. Sorry, no amazing desserts, but if you bring him a banana, he will tempura fry it and serve it w/ice cream, yum! But don't tell him I told you this. ;)

          In Long Beach, on or near 2nd St. there are a couple of places...
          Open Sesame, Cafe Gazelle and Magic Lamp are a few of the great places on my list. But these are not in line w/your wants, sorry.

          Please report back w/what you decide on and how it went.

          1 Reply
          1. re: justagthing

            Can't say enough about Koi! We are fans of Daigo (sp?), whose station is on the corner next to Taka. He's very creative and friendly, and also has a loyal following.

          2. Frenchy's, for Provencale style French.
            Tracht's, as the OP said.
            Lasher's on 4th near Redondo for southern style American.
            Walt's Wharf on Main St. in Seal Beach for seafood (or King's on Pine, but that's a chain and not unique to Long Beach)
            Mediterranean/North African abounds on 2nd Street: Open Sesame, Sunnin, Magic Lamp, George's (Greek)
            Christy's on 4th for a fairly traditional, but excellent, dinner (steaks, chops, pastas).

            1 Reply
            1. re: CynD

              But King's did start in Long Beach, in fact, wasn't the location on Pine the first one?

            2. Linking ... also, a map:


              111 East Ocean Blvd, Long Beach, CA 90802

              George's Greek Deli
              318 Pine Ave, Long Beach, CA 90802

              Jongewaard’s Bake 'n Broil
              3697 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach, CA 90807

              Open Sesame
              5215 E 2nd St, Long Beach, CA 90803

              Frenchy's Bistro
              4137 East Anaheim Street, Long Beach, CA 90804

              3441 E. Broadway, Long Beach, CA 90803

              Magic Lamp
              5020 E 2nd St, Long Beach, CA 90803

              King's Fish House
              100 W Broadway Ste 1000, Long Beach, CA 90802

              Koi Restaurant
              600 Pacific Coast Hwy Ste 100, Seal Beach, CA 90740

              Cafe Gazelle
              191 La Verne Ave, Long Beach, CA 90803

              Walt's Wharf Restaurant
              201 Main St, Seal Beach, CA 90740

              Sunnin Lebanese%u200E
              5110 E 2nd St, Long Beach, CA 90803

              1. Tracht's is an overpriced expense acct restaurant, IMHO. Best true foodie experience in LB is Benley's. Great French/Vietnamese food right where LB hits Cerritos. It used to be BYOB, but I hear they have a wine list now. Great seafood and dessert. Best dish is risotto.

                13 Replies
                1. re: wasabica


                  Benley, a vietnamese kitchen
                  8191 E Wardlow Rd, Long Beach, CA 90808

                  1. re: wasabica

                    Agree about Tracht's, (and I love Jar) and Benley is awesome, the old chef is back and things are better than ever! I would also say Michael's on 2nd street, seriously fine food that I would be willing to drive to LA for and they have a beautiful roof top area with couches and a fire place...very fine.

                    1. re: bubbles4me


                      I'm a little surprised that no one has mentioned L'Opera or the Madison, two places I've never had the opportunity to try. Does anyone have an opinion?

                      Michael's On Naples Ristorante
                      5620 2nd Street, Naples Island, CA 90803

                      1. re: maxzook

                        Thanks for linking...I don't know how to do that. L'Opera is fine, great space but the food is kind of dull and it is way overpriced. Madison is cool for a drink, same thing, great spot, uninspired food and overpriced...just my 2 cents.

                        1. re: bubbles4me

                          Bubbles, linking is easy. When you click Reply and the box opens up, click on "Link to a place" which you will see at the bottom below the box. Then simply type in the name and the city, then click the red Search box. It should come up with a link if the place has a website. Check the link and then click Post My Reply.

                          1. re: bubbles4me

                            A few tips:

                            When searching for a restaurant in the City of Los Angeles, use "Los Angeles, CA" in the City field even if the resto is in, say, North Hollywood or Los Feliz. But if the resto is in an incorporated city like Burbank or Long Beach, use that city name (yes, it's very confusing).

                            If you see multiple enties fro the same resto, use the one that has a Zip code. If there is no listing with a Zip, it probably doesn't matter.

                          2. re: maxzook

                            I was wondering about L'Opera too...I had dinner there years ago and wondered whether it went downhill since it received no mention. At the time, I thought it was a nice restaurant, with good food, service and decent wine list. I'm kinda sad to hear that the food is dull....

                          3. re: bubbles4me

                            Has Michael's noticebly improved since it opened? We went there in December and found it mediocre and uninspired, with tables crammed so close together we couldn't be served w/o being jostled and could not avoid the conversations of neighboring diners.

                            1. re: lawdog262

                              To be honest I have never eaten inside, always on the roof and there is plenty of room up there. I think the food is fantastic, classic dishes prepared with the best ingredients and not in anyway overdone...simple clean, fresh flavors. As someone that was getting tired of driving out to LA to have a great meal I think Michael's is a much needed and welcomed restaurant to Long Beach.

                              1. re: lawdog262

                                Went to Michael's last week. Had the tasting menu with wine pairings.

                                Stupendous. STU.PEN.DOUS.

                                The sommelier REALLY knows what he's doing, and the chef himself came out with one of the courses. It was fascinating; the food was Italian in ingredients and textures and execution, but the combinations had a subtlety and focus on balance that one associates with Japanese fine dining. But tastier. And the dessert course was flawless.

                                Also: Seconds on Benley and Enrique's. Great places.

                                1. re: lawdog262

                                  Agree with below rave review on Michaels. I posted a few weeks ago. Chefs menu was very well done. Wine pairings were spot-on. Will not only return but frequent. Two of the dishes - a squid ink pasta with clams, and a sirloin strip with crostini were LA standouts.

                                  Big marks down on service, I had to explain to the waitress what a wine pairing was...she finally summoned the manager who knew the deal. Two dishes were not slow, but served almost-warm.

                                  I hope the service improves soon. Michaels will be a great addition LB>

                              2. re: wasabica

                                I agree with Benley's, small space but excellent food and friendly staff. I like Bono's in Belmont Shore also. I was at Tracht's in December and was not that impressed with the food.